Friday
Jan312014

[Watch] The 1975 - "Settle Down" (Official Video)

The 1975 are back up to their old tricks and have released a black and white clip for their new single, "Settle Down". The video is set in a rural town and it all looks rather bleak as it follows the story of two young boys going about their daily business. It all seems rather average before ending in a strange turn of events. It left me a little confused upon first watch but apparently the video is said to be based on a recurring dream Matt Healy had as a child and this is it coming to life. See what you make of it below. Seems like the beginnings of a pretty good supernatural movie to me.

The 1975's debut is out now and the band are already at work on a follow-up which is sure to impress.

Friday
Jan312014

[Watch] St. Vincent - "Digital Witness" (Official Video)

St. Vincent's new self-titled album is set for release on February 25th via Loma Vista. The second track, the brass filled choppy number, "Digital Witness" has been given the official video treatment now and sees it matching up to the edgy and punchy dynamic of the song. Bold colours of green and yellow are strewn throughout by director Chino Moya and the sharp cuts and movements of the dancers/extras fit the audio well. Can we just have the album already?! I'm getting impatient. 

Bonus video: Did you know Annie Clark is rather good at football? The European kind, Soccer to you people in the US. After quitting at 12, which was actually when she got her first guitar, her energy was solely then focussed on music. Good thing for us, huh?

Friday
Jan312014

[News] Parklife Announces Initial Line-Up including Snoop Dogg, Foals, Kendrick Lamar & More

As we mentioned earlier the festival line-ups are coming in thick and fast and Manchester's very own Parklife Weekender, organised by the people at Warehouse Project, have just released the initial bill. For an event that's been growing year on year since its inception, it seems they've delivered once again as it's pretty damn big! Snoop Dogg and Foals top the bill on the main stage in the evenings while throughout the bill are big names. Bastille, Disclosure, Katy B, Soul II Soul, Danny Brown, Public Enemy, Seth Troxler, Chromeo, Moderat, Maya Jane Coles, London Grammar, Mount Kimbie, and a UK festival exclusive from Kendrick Lamar. It's sure to be a huge weekend. Check out the full line-up so far here.

With more announcements to come, who knows what other surprises the team has in store. The event takes place in Manchester's Heaton Park on the weekend of June 7th-8th and you can pick up tickets from £79.50 for the full weekend, or £49.50 for a day ticket over on parklife.uk.com.

Friday
Jan312014

[News] Live at Leeds 2014 Announces Initial Line-Up 

It's that time of year again when festivals big and small begin to tease their fans with the artists that will be gracing their stages. Of course there are the huge announcements Stateside with Outkast reforming for several dates both on US soil and UK. But here at SKoA we're focussed on the ones close to home; For myself (Shey), that's Live at Leeds. A wonderful event that takes place across the city of (you guessed it,) Leeds, and draws bands from a smorgasbord of genres to venues throughout the city. Last year I had an absolute blast and the event was one of my highlights of the festival calendar. This year looks set to top it as they've announced their initial line-up which you can see above via the fancy new poster.

Making up the bill are Albert Hammond Jr, Blood Red Shoes, Catfish and the Bottlemen, Chloe Howl, Drenge, Pulled Apart By Horses, Wolf Alice, Yuck and hoards of other damn fine bands. 

Taking place in 2014 on the weekend of 2-5th of May, tickets are priced at just £25 and for the stuff you can see for that price, I'd snatch up a ticket fast. Grab them over here.

Friday
Jan242014

[Interview] Hidden In Plain Sight: (Re)Introducing Kenna

It wasn't until I was preparing for my interview with Kenna that I finally sat down and did the math: I have been a fan of his music for over a decade now. This summer it will be 11 years since the day I first encountered "Freetime", from his 2003 debut, New Sacred Cow. I remember the day well. I was sitting in my parents house watching MTV2 with a notepad on the coffee table. This was my ritual when my friends were out of suggestions for new bands to listen to. Every few months, I would sit for about an hour and take note of any bands that were worth possibly buying CDs for and then go out and buy them, but only after quizzing myself a few days later when I would look back at the notepad and try to remember anything about the artist. "Freetime" easily passed my silly test. Soon after picking up New Sacred Cow, I set myself on a course that, unbeknownst to me at the time, would lead me to writing the words you are reading today. After moving to NYC in 2006, I would spend random lonely Friday evenings on my laptop, checking up on any bands in my 3rd gen iPod that hadn't released new albums in awhile. This is how I ended up on the Kenna message boards, which is where I met Rocko shortly thereafter, and around 3 years later, SKOA was born.

Click to read more ...

Thursday
Jan232014

[Listen] Manchester Orchestra - "Top Notch"

In a year that is going to see some big albums being released, there's a handful that have me acting like a giddy little kid on his birthday. So, with that in mind, it makes me extremely happy to be posting this next bit of news. Manchester Orchestra have just announced a brand new album set for April 1st, and no this is not a joke. Titled, Cope, it seems that the band have gone back to a huge sounding and raw power that they became known for on Mean Everything To Nothing. Their last release, Simple Math, delivered a well rounded, more subtle approach, yet it seems they're going for something a little bigger with the new release. In a recent interview, Andy Hull stated the new record was recorded with them trying to capture their live energy and sound. Lead track "Top Notch" seems to have done just that with punchy and hugely heavier sounding introduction with Andy's signature vocal delivery cutting through the mix like knuckle duster to the face. Upon first hearing this the hairs on the back of my neck stood up. But hey, that's me. Judge for yourselves below and get excited if you like.

You can also grab the download for the cheap price of your email address. Treat yourself.

Wednesday
Jan222014

[Listen] Breton - "S Four" 

Photo Credit: Kieran PharaohEarlier today, Breton unveiled a new song from their upcoming album, War Room Stories, due out on February 3rd. Of all of the tracks we've heard so far from the new album, "S Four" most appropriately showcases the growth that the band has seen since 2012's Other People's Problems. The band has clearly thought out which edges were the right ones to smooth out and which ones to keep jagged and sharp. Where "Got Well Soon" reminded us of the band that we've grown acquainted to was still capable of, "Envy"  and "S Four" (below) are demonstrative that you don't always have to sacrifice complexity for palatability, or vice versa. It's no small feat the way the band can weave their usual layered beats and instrumentation alongside the likes of orchestral movements and sounds as basic as knives scraping against the pavement (which finally explains that teaser clip from last year). It's executed in such a seemingly effortless fashion that it takes several careful listens to stop taking all of these details for granted. It took me until the third listen to hear the knives sample, for example. 

If you've got a hankering for more newer Breton songs, you can also grab their Force of Habit EP  that they released for their US tour (that unfortunately was rescheduled for later this year). 

Make sure you pre-order War Room Stories now, because that's what nice people do.

Breton On Tour

06/02/14 - West Rock, Cognac, France - http://tinyurl.com/bretoncognac
07/02/14 - Charada, Madrid, Spain
08/02/14 - Be Cool Club, Barcelona, Spain
09/02/14 - Le Bikini, Ramonville St Agne, France - http://tinyurl.com/bretontoulouse
10/02/14 - Rockstore, Montpellier, France - http://tinyurl.com/bretonmontpellier 
11/02/14 - Ninkasi Kao, Lyon, France - http://tinyurl.com/bretonlyon
13/02/14 - Lanificio 159, Rome, Italy 
14/02/14 - Covo Club, Bologna, Italy 
15/02/14 - Magnolia, Milan, Italy 
17/02/14 - Komplex Klub, Zurich, Switzerland - http://tinyurl.com/bretonzurich
18/02/14 - Les Docks, Lausanne, Switzerland - http://tinyurl.com/bretonlausanne
19/02/14 - La Laiterie, Strasbourg, France - http://tinyurl.com/bretonstrasbourg
20/02/14 - MTC, Cologne, Germany - http://tinyurl.com/bretoncologne
21/02/14 - FIREWORKS! FESTIVAL 2014, Roubaix, France 
22/02/14 - La Nouvelle Vague, Saint-Malo, France
23/02/14 - Botanique, Brussels, Belguim - http://tinyurl.com/bretonbrussels
24/02/14 - Übel & Gefährlich, Hamburg, Germany - http://tinyurl.com/bretonhamburg
25/02/14 - BETA, Copenhagen, Denmark - http://tinyurl.com/bretoncopenhagen
26/02/14 - Privat Club, Berlin, Germany - http://tinyurl.com/bretonberlin
28/02/14 - Paradiso, Amsterdam, Netherlands - http://tinyurl.com/bretonamsterdam

03/03/14 - The Louisiana, Bristol, UK - http://tinyurl.com/bretonbristol
04/03/14 - Soup Kitchen, Manchester, UK - http://tinyurl.com/bretonmanc
05/03/14 - Village Underground, London, UK - http://tinyurl.com/bretonlondon
06/03/14 - La Cigale, Paris, France - http://tinyurl.com/bretonparis
07/03/14 - Le 106, Rouen, France - http://tinyurl.com/bretonrouen
08/03/14 - L'Echonova, Saint-Avé, France - http://tinyurl.com/bretonvannes
20/03/14 - Treefort Music Fest 2014, Boise, ID, US

Friday
Jan172014

[Listen] James Blake - "40455" 

After announcing in December that the likes of James Blake and Steve Angello will have shows on the BBC Radio One's Residency programme this month. Last night  Blake was on the other side of the desk and on his show he debuted a new track of his titled "40455" and it is everything we've come to expect from him. Swooning, sweeping, soaring and all round staggering. I honestly don't think I'll ever get bored of his style and music. It's perfect to pass the time on a hectic Friday morning in the office. It's helping me fight off the caffeine shakes at least so why don't you all just take a break and enjoy. The weekend is nigh. 

You can re-listen to the entire show over here, on which he also dropped a remix of Beyoncé's "Drunk In Love". Alternatively, you can jump to the aforementioned tidbits by listening to a radio rip of both below. 

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